September 2015 MAP Update
| P.O. Box 128 | 575 US Highway 250 | Savannah OH 44874 | Office: (419) 962-1515|
In This Issue
|Personal Greetings (By: Joe Keim)|
For the past few years, my heart was torn between teaching the former Amish Sunday school class on Sunday mornings and traveling to churches. We often prayed that God would provide the ministry with a person who could do either one or the other.
At this time, I really feel the Lord has called and equipped my brother John to teach the class. Not only is John a gifted teacher on fire for God, but he and his wife, Miriam, do a tremendous job raising their four children. Both John and Miriam are taking online Bible courses and serving in the name of Jesus every chance they get. Esther and I are so proud of them and their family.
Since Esther quit her full time job, she and I have been traveling and speaking in various churches throughout NY, OH, PA, IL, IN and MI. As always, we tend to run into former Amish individuals and families wherever we go. They all have a story. So many have had to come through a tremendous amount of obstacles to get to where they are at today. I’m learning to listen more, speak less, care more, and pray much.
This summer, MAP has received an overabundance of Amish people crying out for emotional and sometimes physical help. The needs vary from Amish men being sent to prison to struggling marriages, nervous breakdowns, threats of suicide and severe anger problems. We have helped several families and individuals with housing, jobs, medical, dental, and schooling. Needless to say, it has been overwhelming at times; your prayers are greatly appreciated.
Dan and his wife, Lydia, have five children. When Lydia’s family and leaders of the church learned that Dan had a new belief, they secretly removed Lydia and all five children from their home. When Dan came home from work one evening, he found a note in his door that read: "Your wife and children have taken a vacation."
Five weeks went by before the Amish community returned Lydia and the children to Dan. Several weeks later, Lydia was standing next to her living room bureau reading a book, and suddenly, the Lord opened her eyes to the truth. For the first time, she understood the gospel and surrendered her life to Christ. Please pray for this family as they have been heavily influenced by Seventh- Day Adventists. In fact, the Adventists have started an Amish ministry in our area and are trying to reach Amish and former Amish. Just south of us, the Mormons have also started a ministry to the Amish and have had a huge impact on six or more families. Not only do we have Adventists and Mormons starting former Amish churches, but the Jehovah Witnesses are passing out literature written in PA Dutch.
Note: Members of the Amish church are required to make two separate vows in their lifetime—one to the Amish church and one to their spouse in marriage. Of the two vows, the one made to the church is, in all cases, more binding then the one made in marriage. Meaning, if necessary, church leaders will force spouses to break their marriage vows to each other.
If you are someone you know is struggling with vow-breaking, I would encourage you to order our small booklet, “My Vows to the Amish Church, Are They Binding?”
Esther and I have been involved in numerous premarital counseling sessions and wedding ceremonies this year. In the next update, we will do one article on weddings. I’ve noticed that most of the ones getting married and starting families end up having between four and five children. This is more than most in the English culture, but less than most Amish families. My mom had fourteen children; I was the oldest.
For now, thank you so much for believing and standing with us. Real souls are being impacted every single day because all of us stood together, shoulder to shoulder, and cared to serve others above our own needs.
|Jonas Yoder Update|
Greetings from Kentucky. Summer is going by fast and soon it will be fall. With the passing of Brother Stan Bramblett, I am reminded again that life is like a vapor. I only knew Stan for a few short years, but he made a big impact in my life. I met Bro. Stan through my involvement in prison ministry. He was very involved in many different mission ventures. He passed away from a heart attack July 2nd while on a mission trip to the Navajo reservation in Arizona.
Bro. Stan was a great example for many with his cheerful character and his passion to see people come to know the Lord. We miss him greatly. Please pray for his wife, Trudy, as she adjusts to life without him.
Last November, I purchased a Peterson portable sawmill. Saw-milling has always been a hobby of mine. The Peterson is a unique swing blade design built in New Zealand. The company asked if I would be interested in doing a demonstration day August 1st. Knowing that saw-milling is a common Amish occupation, I took the opportunity and invited local Amish and Mennonite people for the day. I turned it into an evangelistic effort by opening the day with prayer and inviting Bro. Harrell from HR Ministries to give a sermonette on the Gospel and relating it to the wood. We had a great turnout of about 30 people, several of whom were local Amish men.
We have another event coming up that we are promoting in the Amish community. Paul Daily (also known as the horse whisperer) from Wild Horse Ministries was here September 7. He demonstrated his method of horse training, while presenting the Gospel at the same time. He has someone local provide an untrained horse, (preferably a wild unhandled horse). In about an hour he will be in the saddle on the horse’s back, all while sharing the Gospel! It is amazing to see. Please pray for the many who were there and heard God’s word.
Thank you for giving towards our building project. The office is nearing completion, but there's still quite a bit to be done on the apartment. We are praying for the finances to be able to complete the project. As always, thank you for your prayers and support. Without you, we could not do what God has called us to do.
— The Yoders
|Henry and Katie Baptism|
Last month, Henry and Katie, formerly Amish, asked their pastor (Mike Futrell) from Christ Community Evangelical Free Church if he would baptize them. They are a young couple who came to MAP last year in December. The following month, in January, I shared the gospel with them and both surrendered their hearts to Christ. Since becoming Christians in January, various people have been used of God to mentor and disciple Henry and Katie. It has been a huge blessing to see local churches come together and throw them a baby shower and help prepare for their first child.
|Nine More Baptisms|
For years, First Baptist Church (FBC) of West Salem, OH, prayed that God would give them opportunities to minister to the Amish community in their area. While the church prayed, they supported MAP financially and volunteered their time. Today, if you go to FBC, you will find three or four pews packed out with former Amish. Truly, the Lord has answered the desire of their heart and blessed the church mightily. In the process of serving the Lord and doing ministry together, Pastor Jerry Arman and I have become close friends. In August, Pastor Jerry and the church invited me to come and help baptize nine former Amish individuals. Can I say: Heaven came down and glory filled our souls!
|Volunteers Needed: Eternal Rewards Offered|
ATTENTION all retired people or others who have some time on your hands! Have you been thinking about doing some volunteer work someplace, or wondering if there was something you could do for the Lord?
Have you considered MAP Ministry? Mission to Amish People?
We can always use some help! We need graders, assembly people, or people who are willing to do whatever needs done. This could be anything from stamping Bible lessons, stamping envelopes, putting gold seals on certificates, putting awards together, etc.; and the list goes on.
We can use you in Savannah, OH on Tuesdays or Thursdays and every other Monday. You can pick your day and time. We are open from 9 - 5, but you don’t have to stay the whole day unless you want to. WE CAN USE YOU!
Just call Tina Duffield, Monday through Thursday, at 419-962-1515. We would love to get you started! You can also email Tina at TDuffield@MapMinistry.org.
|Living Trust and Estate Planning|
There are various ways you can leave something to continue the Lord’s work here when you graduate to Heaven:
Call (419) 962-1515 or email us at Map@MapMinistry.org
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|Taking the Back Roads|
Not long ago, Glenn and I decided to take a road trip to make contact with several friends and associates of MAP Ministry whom we had met during the Amish Awareness Conference: Jonas Yoder and Samuel Girod families, and Darren and Sarah Baker.
For this trip, we decided to get off the interstate and concentrate on the countryside. There is a parallel in this short missive about our trip. It has to do with getting off the “main roads” of our relationships—driving the extra mile, so to speak, to get more closely connected with those we seek to support. We were able to connect with three families who are serving God daily in southern Indiana and western Kentucky.
Samuel and Polly Girod have a peaceful home that mixes their former Amish way of life with English-style conveniences. Samuel still faithfully milks a cow. Polly gently cares for their children, Rebecca and Malachi. Rebecca gathers eggs and brings them to the house. Polly, though quiet at first, has a great deal to say. She allowed me to take a close look at a beautifully hand-stitched Amish cap that she keeps behind glass in a china cupboard. She has a story that goes along with that cap that might break your heart, but that’s for another time. Samuel is bold in his profession of faith and sincere in his desire to evangelize.
Jonas and Mary Yoder have a busy household with eight children, a big garden, chickens, and even a milk cow. We spent an afternoon and evening together talking about God, family, and life in the ministry. While Jonas and Glenn went deeper into ministry discussion, Mary and I kept one ear open in the kitchen, adding important thoughts as we did the supper dishes. Jonas is sincere in his desire to serve God through both MAP Ministry and HR Ministries (a regional prison ministry). He is quiet, thoughtful, and earnest about ministry.
Darren and Sarah Baker have chosen an interesting lifestyle. They have purposely moved into an Amish community—into an Amish house, with no electricity or running water. While we were seated on simple wooden chairs placed closely in a circle, they expressed a deep desire to serve God through ministering to the Amish people. They are in the midst of forming relationships through day to day contacts and through the herb and alternative medicine shop that Sarah operates. There is a Godly passion and maturity in them regarding their budding ministry. Darren feels confident that they are called to start a “home church.” It is their hope to find inroads into the lives of their Amish neighbors.
It is amazing what can be learned when we choose to get off the interstate of our lives and take a deeper, quieter route to relationship. We are delighted to know a little better these MAP associates who desire to serve God daily in the way they walk, talk, and minister to the Amish people. —Glenn & Molly Smith